On the last page of every issue of her magazine, Oprah writes a feature called "What I Know for Sure". It is usually a distillation of – or perhaps the inspiration for – the theme of that edition. This month's theme was intuition, the feeling of just knowing that some course of action is right or wrong for you.
"The intuitive mind," said Albert Einstein, "is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." We all are intuitive, but we don't listen to our gut feeling. We learn not to, in fact. I often have to defend myself against myself, as logic and common sense and the "right" way to do things conspire to blow out the spark of insight and drown the fire in the head. Even when I do listen, I don't follow what I hear all the time. Bad marriages, bad business decisions – how many such griefs could be avoided by just paying attention to the little voice, the synchronicity, the dream?
In April 2002, I dreamed I was singing in a club with my band when, partway through the first song, the piano player started to collapse and couldn't continue. I wrote the dream down, and then forgot about it. Several months later, in August, 2002, I was playing the Rosendale Cafe with my band when, partway through the first tune, my piano player, Vinnie, started to collapse, and couldn't continue. A friend took him home. Eventually, he was diagnosed with severe Lyme's disease, and received treatment. I still didn't remember the dream. I only found it earlier this week, as I was tracking a different intuitive dream guidance that has been insistant, but that I, to my regret, have brushed aside for years.
Often I find I have to defend myself against myself, as logic and common sense and the "right" way to do things try to blow out the spark of insight and drown my fire.
Coincidences, or "life rhymes", are another of intuition's angles of appproach. Years ago, when I was nursing my dogs through cancer, I found Maukie.
Maukie is a little Flash cat that purrs when you "tickled" with the cursor. She – or he – is black, with white paws and white whiskers, and big green eyes. It cheered me sometimes, when I was feeling very dark, to hear that purring sound even though I knew it was ones and zeros, pixels and beeps.
Several years after that, when I moved back into the city, I discovered Diane Duane's feline wizards series, and The Book of Night with Moon, which I loved. Rhiow, the lead character, is described as a small black cat. On the book's cover, she is depicted as black with white at her neck, white whiskers, and green eyes.
This past May, Mrs. Peel stormed my Castle of Common Sense (impractical to have a pet in the city, I do too much traveling, vet bills, etc.). What did she look like, do you suppose?
One could say I was primed to choose the black kitten, but there was no other kitten there. She had been pre-chosen for me. It was a Divine set-up, and all my logic was worthless in the light of those green eyes.
Oprah's intuitions, she says, have led her to wealth, influence and success. Mine have not been so spectacular, perhaps because I have resisted them more often. I have gained confidence in fit and starts (much more slowly than I gained the appearance of confidence). Conventional wisdom and advice have not served me particularly well over the years, less well recently. I am renewing my membership in the Dream Library. Rhiow says, "A claw goes further into the ear than a thousand explanations." I intend to be paying keener attention to the wisps and the whispers, so as to not require the big fat can't-miss-'em signs, the claw in the ear, and the cosmic kick in the keister quite so often.